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Welcome back MLU! One of the best parts of every day.
Agreed--this always is fun.
The actual *writing* in these write ups has been great this year, across the board. A pleasure to read. Thank you.
Insightful and on point, as always. Thanks.
Great stuff. Thanks
Really enjoyed the combination of the one-time and season-to-date looks. Good idea.
Terrific work! Thanks.
These are useful. Thanks.
A really well-written and affecting piece. Thank you.
Excellent article. Thanks.
It's great to have you doing this. Much appreciated!
Thank you for publishing this.
Yes, great to see you here again, Jeff!
Thanks. I look forward to the MLUs from the AFL. One of the best ways to get perspective on what's going on there.
HURRAH! MLU is back! Wonderful.....
Thanks--interesting article throughout, but the last three paragraphs are really telling (and a little reminiscent of some of what <a href="http://www.baseballprospectus.com/author/jeff_quinton">Jeff Quinton</a>'s been writing about decision making). I love seeing this kind of thinking here.
Good stuff, as always. Thanks, Russell.
It's been a real pleasure following your work. I will miss it! Best of luck on your next ventures.
I enjoy this feature a lot, and find it very useful. Thanks, Craig!
Good context! Thanks.
Good stuff! Thanks for doing this.
Starling also has 17 Ks in 41 <span class="statdef"><a href="http://www.baseballprospectus.com/glossary/index.php?search=AB" onmouseover="doTooltip(event, jpfl_getStat('AB'))" onmouseout="hideTip()">AB</span></a>. Just FYI. That’s all. Just… just so you know what’s up with him...
It is wonderful to have MLU back, Jeff. You do a great job.
Excellent, as usual. Thanks.
This is a really fun exercise! And in some ways, the further back in time that you go, the more interesting it gets. 2010, please:-)
I appreciate that you are serious about what you do, and are willing to reflect critically on how you do it AND share the results with your readers. Thanks.
Smoak had a .497 SLG and 9 HR in 183 PCL AB's in 2010, split between OKC and TAC.
Wonderful stuff. Thank you.
I just saw Starling play at Wilmington yesterday, and sadly, in that particular game, it looked like the scout was right--although he did walk twice, at least.
Welcome back MLUs that count! One of the best parts of BP.
Good stuff. Thanks.
This was huge fun. More of these during the 2014 season, please.
This was wonderful, and I would love to see more articles where you view baseball management decisions through the lens of behavioral economics. Thanks.
I actually LIKED your haiku. It has a certain elegant simplicity. Except that it's not true.
Thanks for going ahead and doing this. Interesting.
Good stuff. Would you please do this same exercise for pitchers?
To quote nberlove, "this is why I subscribe". (Well, this and Professor Parks.) Tremendous work.
Thanks--just the latest in a series of terrific articles over the last few months. You are becoming my #1 reason to read BP.
I also would love to see Upside return--or to see a viable successor to it. Thanks for the team previews and prospect analysis. They are good to see, and pairing them was a good idea.
This is good stuff, and sync'ing it up with the Prospect pieces is a good idea. Thanks.
And speaking of brutal honesty, great comment on Nesseth. Thanks.
This was a consistent high point of my 2013 lunch breaks! Please bring it back next year. And thanks for the Phillies comment today. Brilliant. And sadly true.
Agree the Urias story is heartening, but the line scores for his Jun 11 and 16 outings make it seem as though the league may have caught up to him.........
Thank you! I look forward to its reintroduction. BP just continues to get better and better.
What is the future of UPSIDE? I know it's shorthand, but it used to be a great way to spur further thinking about the future worth of players for dynasty leagues. Have you found a way to compute it that is satisfactory, or is the lack of a suitable computation the reason for its disappearance?
I agree. Great stuff.
I agree. This is a GREAT addition. Thanks.
This is just as good a feature as it was last year, with "maybe even better" well in reach. Another thing I will read loyally every day. Thank you!
This is a terrific addition! I will look forward to reading it 7 days a week, every week.....,well done.
Good for you. This is a great way to run a business, and to communicate with your clients.
ps I do play in fantasy keeper leagues, and a useful UPSIDE number seems like a great way to evaluate players for the (very) long term. Thanks for taking a new look at that and trying to come up with a more meaningful number. I hope that forward-looking GMs may look at it too (are you listening, Ruben Amsaro Jr.?)
*PHILADELPHIA* (land of short-term baseball thinking)
I'm very late reading this, and plenty of people have said so already, but this is fantastic stuff. Thanks.
Amazing stuff--some of the best on the site. Thanks.
Awesome! A wild idea, done well:-)
“I think it’s fun,” Wilmington devotee Pam Shukitt said. “It’s something different that you don’t normally see in sports. It’s a celery. When we score it’s like, OK, here comes the celery.”
It's probably not necessary to say so, but I will add my voice to the chorus: this was REALLY funny (and well-constructed). More, please.
Please, please, PLEASE keep doing these all season. Absolutely great stuff.
Very glad to see this again. I enjoy it EVERY day and appreciate your taking the effort to compile and comment on it. Today's surprise: Gauntlett Eldemire!! Is that a great name, or what?
Thanks for continuing with these. I know that you must be very busy, but these are one of my FAVORITE parts of BP, and I appreciate your making the time to do them every week.
These are great. Something else that I look forward to each year, and they never disappoint. Thanks.
Churned its writers
Turned towards fantasy
Still itself? We hope.
"I feel so good that I can't slow myself down." +++
What they said, Christina--WELCOME BACK! This is one of the best pieces that I've read in BP since you left. As you can tell from the comments above, it's clearly thought-provoking, and there's hardly a better compliment to a piece of analysis than that. Well done, and thanks for inspiring all of us here to think a little bit more for a change.
Well, the thought that is uppermost in my mind is how unfortunate all of this is for Cowgill. He could've been a contender.
And on the other hand, though, if he had hit and killed Musial, he would have gone to jail for (perhaps) second-degree murder, if he hadn't been the victim of mob violence first.
You continue to dig up amazing stuff. Thanks for the hard work.
If you can't relate to what Stephen is saying, try reading "The Neon Rain" by James Lee Burke. Not only is it a great detective story (with one of the greatest detectives ever, Dave Robicheaux--a troubled, severe alcoholic, but also an upright and principled man), but it put me in touch with this world in a way that no other book ever has.
Great stuff. Don't really care what Ebert thought about EIGHT MEN OUT, though--I still think it's one of the best movies (not just baseball movies) of all time.
This is marvelous writing. It's just a complete pleasure to read your stuff. This one's full of insight (and wit). Thanks--made my day!
For some reason, this made me wonder whether there is such a thing as "QUAD-A" pitching. Certainly there are pitchers who stall out at AAA (but are there that many, compared to hitters?).
Wha5 are the symptoms? I'm thinking about these:
--lack of an out pitch, too few Ks, too many HRs (for soft-tossers)
--problems with control, walk rate, command (for hard-throwers)
Some of the adjustment/talent issues also could come into play for these pitchers.
Really, really, really good. Thanks.
Great stuff. You left out the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, but otherwise you hit the main points:-)
Seriously, I've been groping around towards this idea for quite a while, but it never quite coalesced in my less-than-agile mind. Now I most likely will remember it forever. Thanks.
We should just compare players from the "steroid era" against other players from the "steroid era", just as we compare players from the "greenie era" against other players from that era. There's no way to know which players from either era abused the drugs, so we don't know the universe against which we should compare any players. So, just let induct the best ones from each era. Bonds. Clemens. Whomever.
"The development of the person is as important as the development of the arsenal".....EXACTLY!!! Thanks for your emphasis on the mental and emotional aspects of development, which are just as important as physical "tools" for 16-22 year olds. We get so caught up in the numbers that these guys put up, and whether those numbers meet our expectations, that we can seem to forget that they're just people--young, developing, uncertain people dealing with a witch's brew of premature wealth, a blaze of publicity and hype, and (for Latin Americans) all of the pressures of adapting to a brand-new culture before they even fully understand their own. Your comments on Profar, Perez, and Alfaro all are worth their weight in gold.
So, about Olt: I can see where trying him out at 1B in Spring Training, as the Rangers have said they'll do, is in their best interests, and maybe even could help him get to the bigs sooenr. But with Olt's skill as a 3B, is the move in HIS best interests? Does it have the potential to mess with his head, or (if continued) to harm his growth as a 3B? He's a person, too...........
Daniel, just want to say once again that I agree--your articles are a great addition to BP.
But....I feel bad for poor Mike Stanton. Maybe he can arrange to spend 5 minutes talking one-on-one with Buehrle before every game.
This is the first time that I remember seeing a BP author mention P.G. Wodehouse, one of my very favorite authors.
Consider this: Wodehouse was on the Cricket First Eleven when he attended Dulwich College, and was one of the best-ever writers on cricket. If he just had grown up in America....who knows?
Very good stuff--I love this way of looking at players. Picked up a nugget that I hadn't focused on before, namely that "athleticism...can be underrated when it comes to command projection". I'll try to take that into account from now on.
And, truly classic stuff: "Arsenal command is usually late to arrive home after going on a date with Tommy John". I would try to make a snarky comment, but there's no way that I could improve on THAT.
HILARIOUS. Thank you. Did you miss Ben Sheets this year? Oh....he's in the special Collateral Damage appendix? Okay.
I agree, Jason--very good stuff. One other question about the implications of the numbers. Don't they also suggest that you should get your ratio numbers pretty much nailed down during the draft, even if it's somewhat at the expense of not only steals but also (e.g.) power and Ks? It looks like it would be AWFULLY hard to pick up any ground in BA, ERA and WHIP during the season, which also makes sense to me intuitively.........
If they can get Tillman, Matusz, Arrieta and Britton all fixed, that is practically a miracle right there. Two of them would be terrific, three of them would be amazing, and the odds of "fixing" all four seem, well, small..............
"The background image is intended to provoke feelings of relaxation and calm while we look at alternate layouts"..........I've been doing technology rollouts for over 35 years and I *NEVER* wrote anything that good for the people who were getting "upgraded". Kudos.
And thanks for doing this--great stuff.
You've got to get these guys as regulars for BP With them and Jason Parks in tow, this would be the best website in the Universe. Thanks for a great Dec 30th read.
My dog is planning to kill me? Oh no, I thought that she only was trying to drive me insane:-) Just one more thing to worry about....
Great stuff! You made my day.
And, apropos of something: why is everyone so down on Dice-K? He was one of the most entertaining people to watch in all of baseball those first two years in the States. And, as I'm sure that you would agree, NOTHING LASTS FOREVER.
HOW DO YOU FIND THIS STUFF? Thank you for coming to BP. You've been a great addition--I always look forward to your articles. And this one really was a peach. Good luck finding those Avengers books, and by all means enjoy your holidays....
At this point I believe that the first priority is finding out who leaked this story and then making sure that they experience some negative consequences for that.
Enough with the Hunter S. Thompson comparison already. In this piece, I really felt that you'd channelled and updated Hermann Hesse. And I mean that in a good way:-) Thanks, and I hope someone sends you a jade amulet for this.
A tour de farce! Thanks to you and Jessie for making us aware (as it were).
now that's what i call Anthropology with a capital A. Robert Ardrey (or Margaret Mead, for that matter) would be proud.
Might be a logical fallacy, but almost ANY pitcher--except for a fewe very rare ones--only has so many good innings in his arm. Buehrle already has pitched a LOT of innings, AND he's not young, so...........
I am painfully shy in any group of over four people. My wife, who's also an introvert, says that the best way to overcome discomfort amidst large groups of people is to imagine that every one of them as an 8-year-old on a playground. It seems to work sometimes.
What do three cutters on the corner mean? "Sit down"?
I appreciated this piece, and would argue that "how you accumulate data" does indeed have some importance alongside the question of "what were your results"? Isn't this why many people now propound the "scouts + stats" model? As you've pointed out in earlier columns, a lot of SUBJECTIVE factors do influence how successful a player will be: for example, adapting to setbacks and stress, just to mention two..
One question, though: as video becomes more pervasive, how much can it supplement being there in person? For those who have have a day job, significant others, and children (or are day traders, are compelled to go to strip clubs, and have dogs) can't seeing video allow you to *look at* many more players that would be possible just by going to live games? Admitting that the video *experience* is far less richer than being at a live game, can it give you useful information anyway?
A high-ranking rival executive with knowledge of the thinking of the mystery team said this was HILARIOUS, and who could disagree?
Reading this (and Mr. Carleton's excellent article) I started thinking about factors that might distort the rate at which particular statistics would stabilize. Though these factors might not be important for GROUPS of players, could they be important for INDIVIDUAL players? I'm thinking about things such as
--players changing teams (especially from one league to another, or one type of park environment to another) such that their statistics might be radically different before and after the change;
--players changing roles: it's frequently noted that young players don't see good results until they get a substantial amount of time in a full-time role, so would their tendencies be accurately reflected in a 50-PA to 150-PA sample size? might they show radically different results in their next 400 full-time PAs, even for stats like Strikeout Rate?;
--injuries: if you combine the statistics for a power hitter before and after a wrist injury (or, maybe more interestingly, partly after a wrist injury and then once it's had a chance to heal fully) to get a 500 PA sample for stabilizing sample size on SLG, how predictive is the result?
I'm probably missing something here, since my knowledge of statistics is laughably small, but I'd be interested in your thoughts....
And thanks for the reminder on this VERY important subject.
You did a great job describing how to improve in any vocation: be objective about your successes and failures, put in all the effort that you can, and never stop trying to do better. As others pointed out here, you seem to have two vocations: scouting AND writing. For our sake, I hope that you don't give up either one--you're terrific at both. But nobody really knows what their future holds. So, for now, we'll just get to enjoy what you do--a lot. Thanks.
Oh, BTW: I think it's a great idea to say how much of each evaluation comes from direct observation. Now, how can we get all of those other "prospect evaluators" in this seemingly burgeoning field to do that?
I second Jon KK's comment. It's wonderful that you are so energetic AND so good. Thanks for all the insight.
Thanks for the link to Nate Silver's article about aging by position. I still really miss him, and quite a few others who used to write here. But I suppose that change is inevitable, especially since basebal analysis for public consumption has become a bigger business. And I do enjoy your columns!
Really, really good. No mention of squirrels, however.
TOP 11s ARE HERE! One of the most wonderful things each year. Thank you.
Oh wow--sign Prince Fielder! They'll be the only team in the majors trying to do that, according to Ol' Jim's priorities. But at least it allows them to dump C.J. Wilson, who only is characterized herein as "very hard to replace". I know, I know: too easy. But, seriously, why not just let Tim McCarver identify the "bold moves" next year? Or maybe Joe Morgan? Or, just maybe, someone who actually can HOLD ONTO a major league GM's job?
OK, it's too easy...but what a way to go out: Prince Fielder as a fallback plan, *AND* a "proven closer"!!! In a perverse way, I'm going to miss these--although I feel slightly guilty taking pleasure watching a car crash 30 times;-)
Given that Epstein will get paid roughly the same amount as Sean Marshall, why haven't the Cubs just forked over the obvious compensation: SEAN MARSHALL? I'm sure that the Red Sox would be happy to take him, and he'd be more useful to them than, sayn Brett Jackson ;-) Plus--and this is the best part--Selig wouldn't have to get involved!
I feel like going and eating there right now, at 8:43 on Sunday morning. A true measure of success, and another 80/80 article.
One of the best parts of the year. Nobody does this better.
Just adding my voice to the chorus of praise.. It *is* wonderful to see you back, and this kind of writing always has been the essence of BP for me. More, please (and not just Part 2, although I'm really looking forward to it).
KG, just for me, your contributions are BY FAR the best part of BP. (Although I am glad that the Professor has joined the show.) I too would love to see this for all 30 teams, although I don't know how you could make the time, since you seem to be in two or three places at once already. Could it be done at the same time that Kiss 'Em Goodbye has been,as SaberTJ suggested above? It would be a major, MAJOR improvement on that, and really useful, even though we all might miss making snarky comments about Jim Bowden. (Well, no, actually, we wouldn't--too damn obvious.) What do you think?
I like the Aramis Ramirez idea too, except for the fact that he will be 34 next year. Might not ba a good addition to an aging team..............
You do an incredible job profiling what's happening with these guys in ONE SENTENCE. Thanks.....
Even better than the first one! Really special pieces that I don't think most people could (or would) write. Thanks.
Mike Olt: trade bait or 1B?
I agree that "looking back" articles like this are invaluable for providing some perspective on the art of evaluating prospects. Kevin, you do a great job of emphasizing that it's not just ceilings and floors, projectability and skills, etc, etc, but that these are human beings too! There are lots of subjective factors that are hard to evaluate (although it seems like some teams are trying harder now to do that), and those CAN CHANGE a lot through time--in part because not only are these guys people, they are YOUNG people. That seems to be the case here.........and it's not surprising.
It is SO GREAT to see these again. Kevin, I believe that you and Jason have commented many times that Arizona Fall League stats are essentially worthless, and that the more valuable insights come from scouting (skills, development, etc). Any chance that you might slant these updates more in that direction?
If Rendon looks like he could be fast-tracked to the majors, when will Washington change his position? It's hard to believe that they would change Zimmerman's.......
Fantastic, as usual. The detailed stuff on Ronald Guzman was amazing. I'm going to start reading Texas Farm Review all the time. I just hope that Ronald doesn't end up with the same fate as JOEL Guzman. At least they've already moved him to 1B, so he won't have to go through 3 or 4 position changes before winding up there or in the OF.
On the Arizona environmental front:
1. At least Val Kilmer gets to gain *his* weight eating from Hollywood food trucks.
2. Sonic serves breakfast.
3. Besides drinking sports drinks before you feel thirsty each time, eating salty foods, and wearing loose-fitting and light clothing and a wide-brimmed hat(obvious stuff) you might want to try these: http://cooldownz.com/
They're cheap and cool (!), plus you can loan them to women having hot flashes.........
Pretty good batting average:-) And...."I’m happy to place as much blame on Tony LaRussa for just about anything as I can." CLASSIC.
You guys have done an amazing job this year. Not only are the columns extremely well-written and informative in pure baseball terms, they've also been an amazing place to learn more about sports medicine. I know almost nothing about anatomy or physiology, but your clear explanations have helped me understand quite a few new things. Thank you for going beyond the obvious, and doing it very, very well.
This was a huge tour-de-force! Really enjoyable to read. Thanks for all of the work that went into it--and your dinner sounded pretty good, too.
Wow, 2012 should be great in Miami!
Shiny new stadium, fiery new manager, maybe a new free agent or two, new owner....Oh, wait. Never mind.
Wonderful. As often is the case with your articles, this was the best part of my day. But I think you should've kept the $12.50 and used it to buy a drink or two. That was the least that you could do for yourself after spending two hours staring at the visage of Brad Pitt, even to answer the call of duty.
Oh, don't pick on Jim. He knows that TYLER CHATWOOD is part of a nucleus that they can build around.
I can commiserate with "timber", above. But this REALLY was an unlikely place for Bowden to repeat his "do anything you have to in order to sign Fielder" meme. Why not just suggest they buy the Space Shuttle and put it in the Chavez Ravine parking lot, retooled as a security device?
So, is there any hope left for Ian Stewart? At all? If not, is 2012 a Jordan Pacheco fest, or do the Rockies go make a trade? Or move Iannetta to third? (Just kidding on that last one.......)
Wow....a Trebuchet? I had to look that up in Wikipedia. Thers's a really good article there--with pictures! I knw what a siege engine was, but I didn't know that was a trebuchet.....very classy. Of course, your article is tons better. What about the Most-Overhyped Category? The Three B's? (Maybe they could qualify based on Brackman alone, even though Betances/Banuelos might deliver.....)
Signing Mark Buehrle is comparable to signing C.J. Wilson? I know that a lot of people have been picking on poor Jim during this series, but there ARE (many)reasons why. However, at least we all do realize that "veteran leadership" is worth at least 5 WAR........
GREAT Stuff! The Glenn Gould references were terrific, and it's fun to think of him figuring out how to fire balls out of a PIANO instead! And even though the Feb 8 All-Stars probably couldn't even beat the Pirates, they have some great baseball names: Charlie Householder! Hoot Evers! and last but certainly not least, BUG Holliday! Probably aren't enough of those to put together an all-BUG team, unfortunately..........
1. I agree with the TOP-5 rating. Your joining absolutely was the best thing about BP this year.
2. I was just kidding about Alfaro. You're right--he's a stud.
Especially if you eliminate the "two leagues", expand rosters and insist that (for instance) no more than 13 of the players on a 28-man roster can be pitchers. This could bring back platoons (sorely missed), encourage better pinch-hitting a la NL, bring back some substitute fielders to replace the guys who play 4 positions but don't play any of them WELL, and maybe even make room for guys under 4'10", who have notoriously small strike zones.
GREAT article...as usual. But didn't #TheLegend disappoint you, at least a little, towards the end of the season? He had a .603 OPS in his last ten games of the year. Was he concealing an injury to his magnificently chiseled physique?
As a resident of Chicago's North Shore, who therefore seems to be obliged to root for the Cubs (or at least follow them), I think that Jim Bowden is right on track here. Extreme problems call for extreme measures! These seem to have the best chance to succeed in the medium term (all we can hope for) and they wouldn't even cause a fan revolt. After the last few years, I'm not even sure that Cubs fans CAN revolt. Not if the Cubs could finish fourth in NL attendance with THAT team and especially with THAT management!
"He'd be a Jimmy Buffett-type guy....." Priceless.
I've only been to Mexico City once, as a traveller--spent 10 or 12 days there. You know a lot more about it than I do, obviously, but wow--to me, you capture it PERFECTLY.
I love these columns. Please keep them coming! Best part of my day today.
Great stuff. FWIW, this seems to me like your best column since joining BP, by a fairly wide margin. Thanks.
Thank you, Kevin. This was a true tour de force performance. I mean, seriously........EPIC.
As a Chicagoan, I think that the media coverage of Zambrano has been influenced not so much by WARP as by FARP (Flammability Over Replacement Player).
Framing the ball unquestionably is a skill--and an art. Yet in most the I've heard about the game's best catchers, past and present, I don't believe that I've ever seen a "best at framing the ball" line item. Who do you believe has been the most reliable at framing the ball?
Amazingly good. I too have used Cot's frequently, for a long time. This will be great to have. Thanks.
Whew, the Grammar Police strike again. I know we're all annoyed by the "lax proofreading" on this site (oh wait, I'm not), but seriously now, raise your hands: how many people read this and thought that OAKLAND played second base in the Futures Game? Yeah, I thought so............
I'm running out of ways to say "fantastic". Or "terrific". I'm just glad you're writing. Thanks.
Terrific as usual. IMO, you're a future 70 writer. And oh, take heart: I have a friend who just turned 28 (admittedly a professional musican), who loves the Pixies. And Big Black. And Dinosaur Jr.....well, you get the idea.
As usual, this was wonderful. Great scouting insights and an almost perfect balance of skills vs. tools. And I love to read your stuff--always (including every Update).
Robert Benchley! Excellent! One of the favorite authors of my adolescence, and one of the wittiest people ever. Yet, to your point, who remembers him now?
I agree with all comments above. Tremendous writing.
Sometimes life is so full of pain, and every memory that I can summon up makes me feel bad. Then I see dogs playing in the park, a young mother pushing a baby carriage, or a sunrise over Lake Michigan, and life seems worth living again. My wife, a very wise woman, once told me that the only two things we know for sure about life are that it is more complicated than we even can imagine, and more confusing than we ever can figure out. So we may as well just live and try not to worry about it.
This was a beautiful article, as others have said. You have a wonderful way of writing about your life. Thanks.
Seems like Steven G wants to focus on managers more these days. Would it be fun to have him do an article like this on "Prospective Major League Managers" (possibly not including retreads)?
I concur with lots of other folks that this series has been GREAT. Love all your work, from the detailed & perceptive (like these) to the bizarre:)
8 of these 10 guys are hitters. Interesting.....(although it's a small sample size).
Great series. Since we're talking about the words/shards that help (de)form fans' expectations for prospects that they've never seen, could you say a few words about "bloodlines"? How seriously do scouts, and front offices, take "bloodlines"? What difference does "he's been around baseball all his life" make? Does anyone believe that a young man's "makeup" will be like his father's?
Let me add my thanks for the Colon stuff. Really, really good.
Sorry for being pedantic, but it's "Trompe L'Oeil". Still a fabulous reference to "fooling the eye". For those who haven't experienced this art technique, check out William Harnett's amazing paintings, or find photos of ceiling frescoes by Andrea Mantegna (a personal favorite) or Antonio de Corregio.
To move on from the bun to the bacon, this was a terrific article--very educational!
Another truly EXCELLENT column. I enjoy both the anatomy lessons and their practical application. This has become one of my favorite columns in BP, my favorite site.
Rooting for Dontrelle, one of the most appealing players of the modern era.
Great story, and terrific writing. But I do wish that you could've taken a break to face down the guy who threatened to break his kid's shoulder. He not only ended the kid's childhood. He probably scarred his whole adulthood too. Guys like that do not DESERVE to go to baseball games.
A fascinating read: I didn't know ANY of the Ebbetts/McKeever story. Thanks.
Once again, thanks for the extraordinarily clear medical explanation. My wife just became a medical malpractice defense attorney, and is rapidly coming up the learning curve on hospital procedures. I showed her one of your articles and she say something like "wow, I didn't know you could learn this much by reading baseball articles--you might be able to keep up with me just from reading this column!".
THANK YOU FOR PRINTING THIS AGAIN. No baseball fan ever should forget this story. Plus, this is a beautiful piece of writing that, very appropriately, pulls no punches. The last three paragraphs, in particular, are TREMENDOUS--reminiscent of the golden age of "muck-raking" journalism. And MLB had--and still has--a lot of Muck to be Raked.
I wish that I believed that the motivations and ethics of baseball's ownership group and, especially, Bud Selig had changed one iota since 2002. Unfortunately, I don't. So it's definitely worth reminding everyone of this sad, sad episode in a series of questionable sagas during the Selig Era.
"Perez knows the strike zone like I know the inside of a psychiatrist’s office"! Don't sell yourself short--this wasn't ALL meat and potatoes:)
The best read of my day is back! Thanks.
Good stuff. I'll look forward to reading this regularly. Thanks.
I should've known that I wouldn't be the first person here to mention Hunter S. Thompson, but I concur. Magnificent.
Thanks again for these articles. The concise, understandable, and yet reasonably technical explanations of injuries, their possible courses, and treatment options are very helpful!
Reminiscence: I actually saw Smoky Burgess pinch-hit a couple of times. (Yes, I'm really that old--although I was just a kid at the time.) He came through both times, and I remember my dad saying something like, "There's a man who really can HIT, soon! It's a shame that he doesn't look fit enough to catch any more...it'd be a real treat to see him get 4 or 5 at-bats a game." I had to agree.
I love reading this column. I always learn several new things. It's a lot like having a good friend who is an expert athletic trainer and actually knows how to explain things! Thanks very much.
For some reason, the Dodgers seem completely unwilling to commit to Paul. Understandable when Torre was there. But now....? Maybe his best chance for a career is to get traded.
I love this series, and I love that you're writing for BP now. After listening to the podcasts, I definitely was hoping this would happen! Please keep it coming.....
And thanks for the rays of hope for the Cubs. Having just moved to Evanston, IL, I feel that I must now become a Cubs fan, and it already seems like a gut-wrenching experience. I hope that their (slighlty?) greater emphasis on player development signals some real changes, rather than just hopping aboard a fad to placate some fans (and Ricketts?)
I agree with hyprvypr. These are worth the price of admission, in and of themselves! Thanks as always, Kevin.
I think someone may have suggested this in response to a previous article, but here goes anyway: Never having taken anatomy, I get a lot of value from your discussions like the one on ribs here today. Would it make sense to excerpt these descriptions and put them in a reference library somewhere on BP's web site? I know that you won't want to repeat them over and over, but it'd be nice to be able to refer back to this one, quickly, the next time I read that someone has,say, a bruised rib.
I agree--more articles like this, please! I particularly enjoyed Jonah Keri's comments. Looks like I should buy his book!
I think that at least one thing we were supposed to glean from this article is that at a given point in time (eg in the first half of Spring Training), a process (gradually making the necessary decisions to put together a bullpen) may be more interesting and worthwhile in terms of "news" value than any other particular result or event (except for major injuries like Wainwright's). Christina, I hope that I put that fairly well--although I know you would've written it much more elegantly!
I actually found this article pretty darn interesting.
This moved me more deeply than anything I've read in a long time. My father was an alcoholic. After all this time, I finally can say that, and even write it for everyone to see. He spent the last 17 years of his life very physically ill before it finally killed him, much too young, and left two sons behind who've missed him every day since.
"What do you do when you’ve destroyed yourself? There is not enough liquor in the world that a man can get so drunk as to avoid that question."
Writing does not get any more perceptive, or any better, than that. Thank you.....and I truly hope that Miguel Cabrera reads your article and takes it to heart.
Sorry, Marc not Mark. I knew better:)
Welcome, Corey! You and Mark are off to a great start. Look forward to your work.
I love the scouting report in your table at the end! Happy Holidays....
Not to get too far off the point in the midst of a very interesting discussion, but Christina: "grognard"? Really? For the non-wargamers amongst us, may I just say "wow"!
I've been doing this myself for a few years, and it is interesting. I do wonder how many of the other sources are doing as much original research as KG does. The high degree of correlation between all of these lists could be because it's very clear who the top prospects are. Or, it could be because many of the compilers of the lists are talking to the same people (scouts) or using the same numbers (MLEs) to come up with their results. What do others think about this?
Love this series of articles, Jeff. Thanks again.
Thanks, Kevin, for the best prospect previews in baseball (bar none!). These are a highlight of my baseball year, and it's always a delight to see the first one.
Thanks! This is one of the highlights of my baseball year, too. Kevin, you do an AMAZING job.
Thanks for your columns over the last month, especially--I've learned a great deal from them. Please keep 'em coming at this very high level of quality! It's a pleasure to get a little better understanding of the business side of the game.